Randa Accessories has doubled the space and size of its Como, Italy, neckwear design center and enhanced the digital capabilities attached to the 100,000 designs in its archives.
Randa, the largest men’s accessories firm based in the U.S., invested 2.5 million euros, or about $3.4 million at current exchange, to expand the 28-year-old center, principally dedicated to neckwear design, to 12,000 square feet from 6,000 square feet and build the size of the staff to 20 from nine. The investment includes both the build-out of the physical plant and expenditures made for technology to accelerate the digitization of an archive of designs dating back to 1910.
The investment is separate from the $25 million Randa spent on its North American facilities to improve processing, production and distribution. Those moves, unveiled in August, included boosting the output and efficiency in its Reno, New Orleans and Toronto operations and the closure of a distribution center in Taunton, Mass., added when it acquired Swank Inc., a rival men’s accessories firm, last year.
Rita Palotti, managing director of Randa International Srl and head of the Como facility, noted that the expansion of the center, along with investments in technology, will solidify Como as the hub of design and trends for Randa’s global operations. “And especially because it houses the worldwide library of designs, and upon completion specifically electronically, it is both a physical and virtual hub,” she said.
John Kammeier, senior vice president of neckwear at Randa, noted, “We are almost 90 percent vertical, so speed-to-market is our forte, but our ability to create customized proprietary fabrics and designs, even matching a warp thread to a shirt color, is what makes Randa unique.” The New York-based company estimates that the center is responsible for the creation of more than 10,000 neckwear designs each year. High-resolution designs are sent directly to mills and other factories for production.
With last year’s addition of Swank, sales at privately held Randa last year grew to $625 million distributed among 18,000 points of sale on five continents. The company has about 4,700 employees and last year shipped more than 65 million units, the majority attributable to belts. Its portfolio of owned and licensed brands numbers more than 75.
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
“Everyone is talking about how the retail industry is struggling, but I think it’s an incredible time because brands who are doing something different and innovative are setting themselves up for the future,” said @adamgoldston, who founded the luxury athletic brand @apl with his brother @ryangoldsten. The Goldston’s are part of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables. See the rest of the list on WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
@eyeswoon blogger Athena Calderone debuted her first-ever cookbook, “Cook Beautiful,” which is heavily centered on the presentation and visual expression of food. Pictured here are her miso glazed carrots from the book. Get the recipe on WWD.com. (📷: @johnny_miller_) #wwdeye